TODAY -

Phishing vs Vishing: The Verbal Challenge

Varun Kapoor *



As cyber crime explodes globally, new and challenging types of crime terms and names are emerging almost daily in public space. If being safe and secure in the virtual space was not a problem enough, citizens today have to deal with this increasingly vexatious terminology and trying to decipher.

First of all they have to figure out what all this cyber-computer related jargon really means and then they have to undertake the onerous task of safeguarding themselves from its evil tentacles. This

sometimes proves to be an almost impossible task and before the poor citizens can get an idea what the crime connected to the name is, they have already become victims of it.

Another challenging feature is that each day a new cyber crime with a new techno-challenging-logic-defying name hits the society. How many and how often will one learn and defend, this defies all logic!

The latest entrant to this crime name challenge is – “Phishing” vs. “Vishing”. This kind of crime is becoming rampant and increasing by the day, that is why it’s explanation has to be taken up immediately.

To simplify matters for the readers it is sufficient to say that Phishing is the technique of using text (sms or email) to lure unwary citizens to divulge personal information, which is used in turn by the cyber criminal to commit a crime on the victim.

On the other hand Vishing is the technique used by the cyber crook to use a voice call to lure the victim to divulge his personal information which is then similarly used.

In Vishing the crook is present virtually in front of the victim whereas that is not the case in the crime called Phishing.

Basically both aim to throw a kind of bait (like in fishing one throws a hook with bait for the fish) to the victim and then wait for them to bite.

They may throw hundreds of baits and ultimately succeed in hooking a couple of victims, their work is done and the crime is complete and information is secured (and then mis-utilized for criminal purpose or gain).

This is similar to baiting fish–scores of them pass the offered bait but only one bites and gets hooked – the fisherman’s work is done and his need is satisfied!

The basic fact is that the citizens need to protect themselves against this misuse of the cyber space to illegally illicit personal information from them.

For that they have to be aware all the time about who they are speaking to or interacting with and what may be their motives. Never divulge personal information to unknown persons while existing in the cyber space.

Have a doubt maybe even suspicion for all unknown calls/sms/emails one receives in this virtual existence and react accordingly.

Get alerted early even today, if one plans to be safe and secure in this ever evolving and changing technologically driven and mystically fuelled world.

[Views expressed in the column are of the author himself]


* Varun Kapoor wrote this article for The Sangai Express
(Varun Kapoor is ADG Narcotics & PRTS Indore, MP
This article was webcasted on January 11, 2018.



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